Posted by: Liz Massey | April 26, 2008

Snapshots: Your life as a cartoon strip

Have you ever wished people understood what your day was really like? Perhaps you can help them out, and enjoy a little creative practice while you’re at it, with a new challenge project I’ve seen floating around the blogosphere.
Vivien Blackburn started the challenge at her blog after seeing a talk by illustrator Liz Minichiello. The idea was for visual artists to chronicle their day through a series of 12 single-panel drawings drawn from memory.
Jeanette, over at Illustrated Life, took up the challenge, as did Robyn at Have Dogs, Will Travel. All three artists provide well-drawn looks at a “day in the life,” and their “comic strips” exude humor, pathos and self-insight.
My thought on this is, beyond being an excellent exercise for dry-media visual artists, this challenge could be tweaked to strengthen almost anyone’s creative storytelling skills…

  • Filmmakers could describe their day in 12 storyboards (very similar to the original challenge)
  • Photographers could present their day in 12 snapshots (regular camera or cel phone)
  • Playwrights could tell the story of their day in 12 snippets of dialogue
  • Poets could tell the story of their day in 12 evocative lines
  • Musicians could provide the story of their day through 12 riffs.

The underlying value I see here is capturing a moment in a concise way and weaving that moment in with other moments in the day to tell a coherent story.

The questions to you:
Have you ever attempted a “day in the life” project in your art?

Was it for practice only or did your project end up being shared with others?

How “typical” did your day turn out to be?

If anyone takes up this storytelling challenge, please post a link to your results in the comments section to this post.


  1. Thanks everyone for enthusiastic response to my research project. Please keep drawing-blogging and email me to alert me of your entry.

  2. […] or your cell phone’s camera. Always useful for snapping quick shots of unforgettable images, documenting your day, or recording short movies that can be used in YouTube uploads, video podcasts, and […]

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